BSC receives $247K grant from USDA for nursing education

 Nov 19 2019
BSC receives $247K grant from USDA for nursing education
Bismarck State College received a $247,366 grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Office of Rural Development Distance Learning and Telemedicine Grant program to expand and improve the college’s ability to educate nurses in Bismarck and in surrounding rural communities.

BSC currently offers distance education for Practical Nursing and Registered Nursing through Interactive Video Network (IVN), the statewide system used for synchronous learning, at five healthcare facilities in rural areas. The grant will be used to improve the antiquated technology in place in Ashley, Garrison and Harvey, and establish a new end-user site in Hettinger to train even more rural students in communities where the healthcare workforce shortage is keenly felt.

“This grant will really improve the experience of students in our rural sites. We’re there to train nurses from these communities, in their communities so they may continue to live and work there upon graduation,” says Dan Leingang, Vice President for Academic Affairs. “Thanks to this grant we can create even better access to nursing degrees in these areas. “

The IVN equipment in the satellite locations is nearing the end of its lifespan resulting in poor audio and video quality, system glitches and issues that impede instruction and learning. The grant will allow BSC to upgrade the system at the three existing sites and install identical technology at the Hettinger site, creating a much more efficient and user-friendly system.

BSC will provide a 15 percent cash match to the three-year grant.